According to the latest numbers from FTR, Class 8 orders for August came in at 15,400 units, up 16% versus July. Orders were down 26% year-over-year, but FTR says that comparison is a bit deceptive as last year’s numbers were exceptionally strong. July 2022 was the beginning of the run-up in order activity that continued through November and beyond, according to FTR, who said that the August level of order activity continues to be below replacement levels. Total Class 8 orders for the previous 12 months have equaled 294,000 units.
“As build slots start to open for 2024 production, fleets are starting to place orders on the books. However, much of the ordering for 2024 has yet to be seen and typically will not show up until September or October,” said Eric Starks, chairman of the board at FTR. “Despite rising order activity, the year-over-year comparisons will look horrible through November due to record order activity in the second half of 2022.”
“The actual unit order levels will be more significant in the near term than the year-over-year change in analyzing the strength of the market,” he added. “Even though order activity is still below replacement demand, a key takeaway from the August data is that fleets are not shying away from ordering new equipment, which is a good sign for the second half of the year.”